How to Manage and Embrace Change When Implementing Construction Estimating Software

There are many challenges when you implement a new software system. Besides the technical backend of implementation, managers need to handle the people-side of making the switch. And that can be the biggest challenge of all.

Change is scary. Especially when your team has been estimating the same way for a very long time. When new software is implemented, employees can feel a loss of control in their work and that causes a significant amount of stress.

For almost 30 years Beck Technology has been guiding general contractors like you on implementing new construction estimating software and we have nailed the transition down to a science. Influenced by the “People, Process, Technology” model from Harold Leavitt’s 1964 paper “Applied Organization Change in Industry,” we’ve created a five-step software change management best practices structure for those of you who are starting your software transition.

What is Change Management for Software Implementation?

According to Leavitt, for a business to grow and change effectively, people, process, and technology must work together. Change management isn't just simply “good communication” but a process that measures the value of the change. 

Influenced by the “People, Process, Technology” model from Harold Leavitt’s 1964 paper “Applied Organization Change in Industry,” we’ve created a five-step software change management best practices structure for those of you who are starting your software transition.

People, process, technology diagramDefine the Change (People)

This first step is, you guessed it, people focused. Often overlooked, defining a clear reason for the change is important. What’s the real reason your team is looking for new construction estimating technology? Is the “fear of missing out” (FOMO) on the latest technology trends a growing concern? Are you looking for construction estimating software because you truly see the value it can bring to your team's workflow?

These are serious questions to ask that will reveal the true intentions for change. Similar to the construction software company, you are “selling” the technology to your team. Explaining the need and benefit of the software will outweigh the “implementation fear.” Another factor to take into account is who will be impacted most/less due to the change in software. Whether it be a self-proclaimed software guru, there will be some level of role change when implementing new technology.

When teams are aligned with the same vision it enables collaboration. Moving forward will be easier and members will be more willing to participate in efforts despite hurdles during the process.

Communication Strategy (People)

It’s a no-brainer that communication is key to successful change.

First, identify the changes that will be made and who needs to be aware of those changes at your company. This can go beyond your preconstruction team, it could include accounting, IT, project managers, and even project owners. Developing a strong and transparent communication flow for your company will enable a feedback loop. This will help your preconstruction team voice successes and challenges during the change journey to implementing construction estimating software.

Focus on Training (Process)

Everyone’s favorite part of getting new construction estimating software! Training.

This part doesn't have to be daunting. After you’ve signed off on a new construction estimating software your team is ready to tackle learning. This step tends to be the most time-consuming because everyone in your preconstruction team will have different learning capabilities. At Beck Technology, we make sure this progression is as simple and straightforward as possible. Your preconstruction team might have to plan out what resources they will need before, during, and after training. This may include in-person, virtual, or module implementation guides. This type of effective training will help your team maximize the return on value for the construction estimating software.

Support Resource (Process)

Don’t go at it alone. Especially with implementing construction estimating software! An effective support structure is vital. We don’t only mean vendor support! (However, Beck Technology’s support team and resources are top-notch.) This is a designated person or place at your company where team members can ask questions, provide advice, and voice concerns while they adjust to the new change in software. Navigating through this change process as a team lead or member can be difficult but as long as your team knows that there are different types of support available, desired results can be reached.

Key Performance Measurements (Technology)

After the training, this is where your preconstruction professionals can use the construction estimating software in the “real world”. This last step is where team members can see the true value of the construction estimating software. Tracking metrics such as bid wins, time and process efficiencies, and utilization help evaluate the impact the software has on your team. Being able to recognize improvements will lead to additional gains for the business as well as the estimating process.

Implementing true and lasting change is not easy at first. And when it comes to construction estimating technology, it seems like the change is constant. But as the construction industry continues to evolve, project demands increase, and the building process remains complex change is the relentless variable throughout. Having a change management plan leads to success. Teaming up with a partner like Beck Technology who has “been there and done that” when it comes to all things related to construction estimating software ensures the hardships of change will be worth it and so much more.

We have plenty of resources available to help you manage a smooth software transition. Read the following blog posts to learn more about new software implementation. 

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